The Teacher's DeskPreschool RoomChildcare ProvidersParents


Ocean Animals

Language & Literacy



Songs, Poems, & Fingerplays:

I'm a Great Big Whale
I'm a great big whale,
Watch me as I swim,
(pretend to swim)
Here is my blowhole,
(point to top of head)
Here are my fins.
(wave hands against body)
See me flip my tail,
As down I go,
(pretend to dive)
Then up I come,
And "Whoosh!" I blow.
(thrust arms up and out)
Elizabeth McKinnon

Literacy : Print this poem on a big piece of tag board cut in a whale shape for kids to practice reading on their own.


Slippery Fish

Slippery fish, slippery fish, (Wiggle hand out in front of you)

swimming in the water, Slippery Fish, Slippery Fish

Gulp, Gulp, Gulp,

And he was eaten by a... (Repeat verses inserting other animals and how they move)

Tuna Fish (Swimming) (Open and close hand)

Octopus (Squirting) (Wiggle fingers in front of you)

Great White Shark (Chomping) (Open and close arms like sharks mouth)

Humongous Whale (Spouting) (Push arms up over your head like water spouting out a blow hole)




  • Alphabet Go Fish!  Have two sets of fish cards one with capital letters the other with lower case and have the kids match the two cases together for a pair.

  • Ask the children what an ocean is?  Where are they?  How are they different from a lake?  What kind of animals live in the ocean?

  • Make a K-W-L (Know, Want to Know, Learned) chart of all the facts the kids know about Oceans, and what they want to know. Afterward revisit the chart and write down new things the kids have learned.

  • Have children dictate stories about their ocean pictures and make a classroom book! One idea would be to start them out with "I went to the ocean and I saw..." And then let them create a picture collage of what they saw at the ocean.

Math & Number Concepts

Fish Bowl Counting: Use a plastic fish bowl or large die cut fish bowls, with small die cut gold fish or plastic fish counters. Roll a dice or draw cards and have the kids place that many number of fish in the bowl. Tell fish story problems, for example: "There were three fish in the bowl and the teacher bought two more at the store, now how many fish do you have?" Have the children use their counters to figure out the answers.






Rainbow Fish
Supplies: Blue tag board with fish shapes traced on it (precut for really young children), sequins, glue, fish line or string, paper punch.
Directions: Each child needs a fish they can cut it out and glue sequins on it how ever they wish to make their very own rainbow fish! Then have them punch a hole in the top and tie fish line or string to hang it with.

Bubble Print Fish- Hang bubble wrap on your easel, let the kids paint it with a kids paint roller. Provide precut fish shaped paper. The kids can place the fish shape over the painted bubble wrap, rub the top and peel it off for a scaly fish print! We offer several colors to make colorful rainbow fish.

Sand pictures- draw a picture with glue and sprinkle sand over the top.

Sand Art- fill baby food jars with layers of colored sand and glue a painted cover on.


Dramatic Play

Put a picnic basket in the House Keeping Corner for the kids to pretend to go to the ocean and have a picnic.

A big box for a boat will add hours of fun! Play fishing poles too!

Fill a small wadding pool with shredded blue construction paper, and plastic fish for the kids to explore.



Music & Movement

Play some classical music and invite the children to "swim" with you underwater.

Encourage them to move to the music discuss what a fish might swim like in the ocean. 

*Increase interest by offering the kids long pieces of blue crepe paper streamers to make ocean waves!


Science & Discovery

Sand Sculptures- I will leave out some sand clay (see Craft Recipes) for the kids to sculpt with all week. I'll leave out a bunch of sea shells, some star fish, etc. for them to make prints in the sand clay and explore with.

Provide shells, star fish, sand dollars for the kids to explore and observe. Offer them magnifying glasses, small rulers to make observations with. *Shells are fun to press into play dough or other clay materials to make prints or "fossils".


Blocks & Building

Add marine animals to the block area. Encourage children to build aquariums for the fish.


Puzzles, Games & Manipulatives










Gold Fish crackers, Peanut butter & Pretzels... Go fishing, give kids a little peanut butter to dip their pretzel stick and and try to stick it on a gold fish cracker to catch it.

Ocean Spray Juice and some ocean animal fruit chews.



Bulletin Boards

"Fishing For Good Work": Hang kid's art work or other work that they are proud of from an ocean themed bulletin board covered with sea creatures and fishing net. Just clip their work right to the nets with clothes pins!

Other Resources



ShopAbout UsSite Map

  copyright   www.